It seems like time and time again, the Minnesota Wild are able to overcome being down many important players on their roster.
Tonight, the Wild were down several important players including Joel Eriksson Ek, Jonas Brodin, Jared Spurgeon, Alex Goligoski and number one netminder Cam Talbot but yet, the team came together to put an absolute beating on Anaheim.
It all started with the new line that Dean Evason put together of Matt Boldy, Freddy Gaudreau and Kevin Fiala. It seems that Boldy and Fiala are able to read off of one another really since the first goal of the game came from Kevin Fiala and Matt Boldy had gained the primary assist on the goal, it was a pretty nice little dish from Boldy to a charging Fiala and ultimately Fiala put it in the back of the net. The goal was Fiala’s 8th on the year.
Ryan Hartman also continued his stellar play as he has all season scoring almost a minute and a half later when he batted the puck out of mid-air and into the goal behind Anthony Stolarz. The goal was Hartman’s 16th of the year. Kirill Kaprizov notched his 27th assist of the season on the play.
Almost three minutes later the Ducks found themselves on the board thanks to Maxime Comtois as the play broke out of the neutral zone, Comtois found himself coming down the wing unguarded and was able to snipe one behind Kaapo Kahkonen before Jordie Benn began diving to make a defensive play on Comtois.
Mats Zuccarello and Kirill Kaprizov showed that their chemistry between them is still strongly intact as the two came together on Zuccarello’s late first period goal. Kaprizov found himself along the boards with Anaheim defenders looming and seen a streaking Zuccarello coming in and passed it and Zuccarello had an absolute beauty of a finish on the play that put the Wild up 3-1. The goal was Zuccarello’s 10th of the season.
Fast forward to the third period 30 seconds in, Matt Boldy shot the puck at the Anaheim net to try and create a scoring play for Kevin Fiala but ultimately the puck bounced off Cam Fowler’s stick and into the goal for Boldy’s 2nd NHL goal and 2nd of the season, and his first multipoint game in the NHL.
Not laying off the gas anytime soon, the Wild jumped out of the gate on the ensuing faceoff after the Boldy goal and that’s when Mats Zuccarello when to snipe town to pull the Wild ahead to 5-1.
Victor Rask and Matt Dumba would score almost 10 minutes apart from one another later on only after the Ducks had potted in two goals of their own from Derek Grant and Trevor Zegras.
Kaapo Kahkonen once again starting in place of an injured Cam Talbot was absolutely phenomenal stopping 39 of 42 shots faced.
*All stats/info from NHL.com